Anthony Davis has flown under the radar since Week 1 of the NBA Rookie of the Year race, lacking the sizzle of a Damian Lillard or monstrous nature of Andre Drummond. Odds are still way off the New Orleans Hornets forward taking home these honors after Wednesday night, but he did finally provide his “For Your Consideration” clip by leaping over Kevin Garnett to tap in the game-winner on Wednesday.
The 87-86 win over the Boston Celtics does not pull New Orleans out of the Western Conference basement, though a win over a playoff-bound squad and clutch play from their No. 1 overall pick are about as much as the franchise could ask for at this juncture.
Davis’ numbers on the night don’t jump off the page, but nine rebounds and eight points in 28 minutes aren’t too terrible either, along a critical challenge on Paul Pierce‘s miss prior to Davis’ game-winning bucket.
These stats look more impressive when considering that Davis began the evening as a game-time decision with stomach issues.
“Right now there’s a good chance he won’t play,” Hornets Coach Monty Williams said 90 minutes prior to the contest, via The Times-Picayune. Again, Davis would make the game-winning bucket.
While Lillard likely ran off with the Rookie of the Year Award well before Wednesday night, Davis is leaving a lasting impression in his own right. His 21.43 Hollinger Player Efficiency Rating actually ranks two spots ahead of Lillard among rookies, while his 13 points and eight rebounds stands out as straight impressive for a forward who just turned 20 less than a couple weeks ago.
Davis has missed 15 games this season. It’s hard to measure his ceiling when he plays closer to 82 games as a full-grown adult.